CENSORSHIP: Natural Health Speech is Under Attack

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CENSORSHIP: Natural Health Speech is Under Attack

The natural health space is under attack, as search engines censor alternative health websites and social media networks delete pages and groups.

The trend seemed to start in June 2018, when Facebook began shutting down communities that focused on natural health. Within a matter of days, millions of alternative health enthusiasts lost their voice.

More than 30 high-profile Facebook communities were closed and banned. Pages and groups with more than 600,000 followers disappeared, leaving administrators helpless to connect with their members.

Here are just a few pages and groups that were closed:

  • Collectively Conscious (915K followers) – Deleted on June 13th, 2018.
  • Viral Alternative News (500K followers) – Deleted on June 13th, 2018.
  • Organic Health (230K followers) – Deleted on June 13th, 2018.
  • Natural Cures From Food (120K followers) – Deleted on June 13th, 2018.
  • Living Traditionally (570K followers) – Deleted on June 5th, 2018.
  • Organic Wellness (600K followers) – Deleted on June 5th, 2018.

Jake Passi, former administrator of the popular Facebook page Collectively Conscious, was devastated to find out that on June 13, 2018, his page was gone.

Passi wrote a letter of appeal to Facebook, to which the social media giant responded:

“Your page has been deleted for causing people to like or engage with it unintentionally in a misleading way. Our Page Terms state that: ‘Pages must not contain false, misleading, fraudulent, or deceptive claims or content’… After speaking with the team regarding this topic, the team has made it clear that this decision is final. I apologize for the inconvenience.”

Google Censors Alternative Health Websites

Social media networks aren’t the only online platforms censoring speech. Starting in August 2018, Google rolled out a change in their algorithm that demoted popular websites that publish alternative health content.

Websites like NaturalNews.com lost hundreds of thousands of monthly visitors, as Google downgraded their articles in its search engine – giving greater visibility to websites that promote traditional medical practices.

On page 108 of Google’s updated handbook, the search engine notes,

Medical and scientific information pages must represent well-established scientific/medical consensus unless the user is clearly seeking an alternative viewpoint. For all information pages, you must check for accuracy and confirm that the information is supported by expert consensus where such consensus exists.

The question, of course, is what constitutes “well-established medical consensus?” Apparently, it’s content from websites that strictly support the mainstream medical opinion.

Are There Alternatives?

Google has monopolized access to information. While you can certainly still find what you are looking for, on occasion you might have to dig a little deeper. There are alternatives to Google, like Bing and Yahoo! (however, similar measures could be taken by these search engines).

As far as social media groups, alternative solutions are limited. But there are other options. MeWe, for instance, is a social application comprised of groups created under user-generated categories (although, to date, activity is somewhat limited).

If you’re looking for a platform dedicated to alternative health, one option is NatCove.com.

NatCove is a natural health social network that allows you to ask questions, share information, and socialize with like-minded people. It’s like joining 10 Facebook groups at once, except it’s an immersive environment all housed under one roof.

Rather than joining an essentials group, natural remedy group, etc., you can connect with others and find information from a wide spectrum of natural health categories.

Want to learn more?

JOIN NOW

 

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Brian Koenig

brian@natcove.com

I am the founder of the social hub for the natural living community